NACC ‘no comment’ response re inquiry into Higgins payout probe

Andrew L. Urban.

It is open to infer that the National Anti Corruption Commission (NACC) is preparing to investigate the controversial and secretive Brittany Higgins payout of $2.44m, partly based on its bland response to our request yesterday for information. Senator Linda Reynolds referred the matter to the NACC in December 2023. 

The media unit sent this stock standard reply: “..the Commission does not provide information to third parties about the receipt or status of individual referrals, or comment on the subject matter of the referrals it is assessing, referring or investigating. To do so may compromise operational activities or unfairly impact reputations.”

My request was based on the argument that this is a unique case, publicly discussed, all key decision-making participants and the recipient already identified. And of enormous public interest – as well as public importance.

It is the most consequential investigation the young NACC is facing and there has been no statement from either Senator Reynolds or the NACC that the referral has not or will not be taken up. How could it not be … failure to take it up would forever portray the NACC as a creature of Labor.

Other than the usual suspects in the mainstream media, many commentators, politicians and lawyers have condemned the absence of due process surrounding the payout. Many in the public have misunderstood the reason for it being compensation to Higgins for being raped in parliament house – when no such rape had been proved. For that reason alone, the Commission would be well advised to issue a clarifying statement; it doesn’t need to “compromise operational activities or unfairly impact reputations”. Surely they could manage that. Perhaps the Commission is slow walking it, to also take note of details that may emerge in the next defamation case to run: Linda Reynolds v Higgins & David Sharaz.

As the Vice President of the Rule of Law Institute, Chris Merritt, points out, “There is a need to clear the air and determine whether this payout was infected by a political frenzy based on falsehoods…. if the Higgins payout was compensation for victimisation by former Coalition ministers that never happened – which now seems to be the case – what is to be done about the bureaucratic rules that made this possible?” In his article (The Australian, April 19, 2024) Merritt makes the point that “The two people who were best placed to test the Higgins claim, Reynolds and Cash, had been prevented from taking part in the mediation that resulted in the payout.

“The Albanese government had threatened to tear up an agreement to pay their legal fees. That meant the officials running the mediation were presented with an incomplete version of reality.

“One of the issues (commissioner Paul) Brereton might wish to examine is whether this undermined the ability of government officials to discharge their duty to defend the financial interests of the commonwealth.”


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16 Responses to NACC ‘no comment’ response re inquiry into Higgins payout probe

  1. Owen Allen says:

    The sickness starts at the top. The higher the level of immorality the worse it gets below until the whole show is contaminated and everyone climbing the ladder is totally corrupted by the time they reach their peak. Can anyone remember Neville Wran, the Fitzgerald Enquiry. Can somebody ask the Prime Minister where the 100,000 recent immigrants are going to live, are more immigrants still arriving daily, are they being issued tents and sleeping bags. The Prime Minister is guilty of Human Rights Abuse of providing people a homeless society to live in. Australia is a third world country with people living like refugees and he is making the situation worse daily. Australia is imploding with corruption and injustice, drug and youth crime epidemic. And the Leaders have led us to this like lemmings.
    When are they going to be held accountable and by who. And that goes for the corrupted state Judiciaries. Criminal Case Review Commission now.

    • Jerry says:

      You might find that Queensland Police Commissioner Ray Whitrod was a good man. Fought a losing battle with death threats from his corrupt colleagues. Many other Queensland police and politicians ended in prison or their reputations in the gutter.Including the hero who got little Ray Bailey murdered by the South Australian Government. No appology or compensation. That’s only for special people. Those that can work the system. What do we need a CCRC for ? We have the likes of a tv channel- (smiling like a 48 Buick) judgements beyond the reasonable and doubtfull and a fantasy land judge with mystical powers – blood in your dinghy-spanners and screw drivers and vomit on your boots. (Flexable Forensics ! The police and DPPs weapon of choice . Manockism rules – OK. No qualified and proper expert second opinion for the jury. 40 years for you from the halfwitted appeals courts. Compensation is for the duplicitous . Childs facial blood on a police dogs teeth. That’s within guidelines. So is 40 years in prison. 6 police bullets in your face . Didn’t have a ticket. Hows that for a puerile excuse ?Maybe the guidelines need a CCRC look-see. One judge,rape verdicts ? Hooray! Lying on the ground wounded,firing with the best of them . Show us the video . The police spotter said clearly “the female was unarmed and trying to hide under part of the house.” Is this the type of “stuff” that depresses some , Causes legitimate despair ? Bit sad.

  2. Michelle says:

    I believe that further investigation is required here and I am not fully satisfied with The Judges comments on the rape allergation. It feel its just a judgement made to align with the current narrative. Whether it is true is false is for CRIMINAL trial to decide. Alot of questions are still left unanswered on Higgins behaviour on the truth. Why didn’t she just go to the police, and what is not being given as transparent truth is just not resonating with me. This did not follow the Legal System policies and I believe is not beyond reasonable doubt. I will not be satisfied by this until a criminal trial process happens.

  3. Jerry says:

    The movie “SHEPHERD: The Story of a Jewish Dog ” – A Nazi Police dog who refused to chew on a Jewish child. If an Australian State Police Dog refused to chew on the face of an Aboriginal Child, would that brief moment of unexpected decent behaviour incur the wrath of its master- end his brilliant career ? (the dogs, not the black shirted masters) All that expensive training wasted ! Has compensation ever been paid to an innocent face chewed Aboriginal Child ? The Aboriginal families on Palm Island received a $30. million compensation for the actions of the brave masked black shirts,with their military weapons. Early morning raiders of children’s bedrooms ! To be found guilty of rape or murder in the brave new Australian system, we don’t need flexible forensics any more. As used in the Chamberlain / Bromley / Sue Neil-Fraser, convictions for example . There were many other convictions where competent evidence was ignored or hidden by the police /dpp / Judge combo. On fact we don’t need a trial of any sort ! A female was believed and 9 men sentenced to death for rape . Later stated under oath ” there was no rape”. Some women have claimed rape when the baby was the wrong colour ! HOWEVER- There is a problem in Australia when seeking justice. It’s so bloody easy to criminally manipulate juries. An absolute speciality in some jurisdictions !

  4. Jerry says:

    This Higgins scullduggerous semi secret (to the mug punters) payment of millions is just another example of the absolutely ludicrous Australian legal Justice compensation systems. Using a police bashed and tortured confession, the totally innocent Darryl Beamish served 15 years even after 6 approaches to the appeals court pompous gits . Sentenced to death initially. 50 years later ( 50 years) was paid $450 thousand compensation by the criminals who ruined his life . Unless using tortured, bashed confessions from the innocent is not a criminal offence ? The South Australian criminally negligent fudge gits murdered Ray Bailey using a criminally acquired confession. Unless torturing a pregnant young lady (Ray’s wife) is not a criminal offence ? So Higgins gets millions and Ray Bailey’s surviving family can’t even get an appology from the criminals for murdering daddy. Michael Chamberlain was never given an appology from the criminals. Unless lying cheating and fabricating forensics is not a criminal offence ? Were not criminal offences committed against Sue Neil-Fraser ? Unless fabrication and congealing of forensics is not a criminal offence ? So Higgins get millions – the innocent get nothing ? Australia All Over !

  5. Jerry says:

    Can we get the money back ? The French are angry with us already . With pay-offs like this- is the moola withdrawn from Centrelink pensioner funds, or is there a special slushy hushy reserve ? Give us the precise exact names and signatures on the cheque. Wouldn’t a group of horrified public servants have to pass the cheque, for perusal and minute scrutiny from shaking hand to sweaty hand and even then require approval from the minister for dodgy dealings? A Hilton Bomb in your bin !

  6. Jerry Fitzsimmons says:

    Likewise RobynL, there was a third factor never mentioned and that was drugs. I’m certain that any person who has been a victim of drugs mixed with alcohol, knowingly or not, will know how debilitating that mixture will have on anyone.
    This would leave anyone not so accustomed to having such a mixture in the state that we hear what the female security person witnessed when first observing Ms Higgins’ state of disarray.
    Justice Lee was unaccepting of what both Mr Lehrmann and Ms Higgins provided as their accounts of the matter in question and the cover-up/ clean-up of evidence made sure that no signs of drug use occurred in the security guarded parliament. Food for further thought about an evening out when ‘whiskey’ would have been available to both protagonist’s in the establishments they had attended earlier.
    Furthermore no one was tested on leaving the parliament after their ‘infamous night out’. The speculation goes on.

  7. Poppa says:

    Surely by now ALL Aussies are aware of the certainty that Governments and their employees are abysses of skulldugery,corruption and self-interest.

    Thankyou Higgins & Lehrman for proving this to be true BEYOND ANY CONTRADICTION.

    Didyahgerrit yet ?

    If not….GET WOKE to reality!

    • Jerry says:

      Legal Justice Scullduggery is one of most fascinating subjects . Galileo and Jesus didnt receive justice -a belated appology I grant you . So pull your head in Bruce ! The Scottsboro Rape trials and Appeals over 20 years are absolute classics. Interesting to follow just who it was who fought for a just verdict. Many attempts were made to impose the death penalty on 9 innocent men . Luckily we in Australia have final arbiters of decency and common sense. Problem is that not one contributor to WCR seems to agree . Just don’t walk into even your suburban magistrates court , presuming a just outcome. Lying their guts out – more likely. Name of the game. Upon medical discharge from the Australian Armed Forces caused by negligence – didn’t even get offered an interstate train ticket. No millions for me . Hitch hiked home in uniform . Decent people would readily pick you up when in uniform. 1960s. Later received a DFRDB pittance. Unfortunately, didn’t have a 48 Buick airing my grievances. (no channel 10).

  8. John Biggs says:

    Prime facie there were grounds for compensation to Higgins. She claims to have been asssuted in her workplace only to be told by her boss she “was a lying cow”. She was warned to keep quiet because an election was coming up. Now of course the probabilities are that Lehrman did rape Higgins. Lehrman has then to face two more rape charges. Why is the right wing press so proLehrman? Because Higgins was so careless as to get raped at an inconvenient time for the Liberals? Or perhaps because some males think they must stick together?

  9. RobynL says:

    There is a third person never mentioned——the female security guard who was first on the scene—-she could give us some very graphic details about body fluids etc. likewise the cleaners who were hurriedly called in——why were they never mentioned?

  10. Linda Barry says:

    What hope does an ordinary person have of any justice in this world on any topic you can think of, With the corruption , deals, and whoever makes the rules. Sadly we have no hope.

    • Jerry says:

      When an acknowledged,as innocent Aboriginal childs face gets chewed by an unmuzzled police dog. What compensation is paid – tin of biscuits ? At least a few hundred thousand would be appropriate . The police force would fight to stop any payment of damages. (sick society)

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